Idaho DUI Laws

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Idaho DUI laws state that any driver over the age of 21 cannot have a blood-alcohol level of 0.08%. There are lower thresholds for those who are underage or people operating a commercial vehicle. Other DUI classifications also could result in harsher penalties.
In the United States, over 10,000 people are killed as a result of drunk driving crashes each year.
Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a dangerous crime and penalties vary by state. Even a first-time offense can cost drivers up to $10,000 in fines and legal fees—and it will most certainly impact your car insurance rates, too.
The car insurance comparison and broker app Jerry has compiled everything you need to know about DUIs in Idaho.
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What is a DUI?

A DUI is considered driving under the influence, while a DWI means driving while intoxicated or impaired. It is left to the discretion of the state to determine the difference between the two.
A DUI charge could mean that the driver was driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs—even if the drugs weren’t illicit. A driver could be charged with a DUI while on prescription drugs or over-the-counter drugs if they cause impairment.
Some states use a different terminology altogether, instead favoring OUI (operating under the influence) or OWI (operating while intoxicated).

DUI in Idaho

Idaho DUI laws prohibit driving or controlling a vehicle if the driver:
  • has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or more,
  • is under the influence of drugs, alcohol, any impairing substance, or any combination of substances.
For drivers of commercial vehicles, the BAC threshold is reduced to 0.04%. It is further reduced to 0.02% for drivers who are under 21 years old.
Commercial drivers may face harsher penalties, but consequences for an underage DUI (with a BAC of at least 0.02% but less than 0.08%) are generally less severe than those for a regular DUI.
Every state has an implied consent law stipulating that you consent to be tested if you’re suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Idaho’s implied consent laws require all drivers lawfully arrested for a DUI to submit to a blood, urine, or breath test. Drivers who refuse the test face a license suspension, a $250 fine, and an IID requirement.
Furthermore, refusal to cooperate with a chemical test may be used against the offender as evidence of culpability if the case goes to trial.

Penalties for DUI in Idaho

Penalties for DUIs in Idaho range based on the DUI classification and the number of prior DUI convictions the offender has received within the last ten years. The penalties for a DUI in Idaho are as follows:

First offense

FineUp to $1,000
JailUp to 6 months
License suspensionUp to 90 days
Vehicle impoundmentNo
SR-22 requirementNo
If the offender has no prior DUI convictions within the last ten years, it is considered a first offense. While the above statutes outline the parameters of the penalty, a judge will ultimately decide the specific consequences.

Second conviction

FineUp to $2,000
JailUp to 12 months
License suspensionAt least a year
Vehicle impoundmentYes
SR-22 requirementNo

Third conviction

FineUp to $5,000
JailUp to 10 years
License suspension1 to 5 years
Vehicle impoundmentYes
SR-22 requirementNo
There are harsher penalties for drivers with an excessive DUI, or BAC of 0.20% or greater. For these offenders, there is a mandatory sentence of a one-year license suspension and jail time of 10 days to 1 year.
Conversely, some drivers can avoid jail, reduce suspension periods, or possibly plead to a lesser “wet reckless” charge depending on the circumstances.
Every driver convicted of driving under the influence must go through an alcohol and drug evaluation. Depending on the results, the judge may order treatment, classes, or other related programs to address substance abuse issues.

Restricted licenses

First-time DUI offenders may qualify for a restricted license instead of having their license suspended for 30 days. A restricted license typically requires an ignition interlock device (IID) and is limited to work- or health-related travel.
Offenders with multiple convictions may petition the court for a restricted license after 45 days, but they must also prove active good standing in a state substance abuse program.
Key Takeaway Minimum penalties increase for DUIs increase for each subsequent offense.
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Does a DUI impact car insurance in Idaho?

Yes, insurance companies take DUIs very seriously and you’ll be classified as a high-risk driver.
It can be difficult to secure insurance with a DUI on your record, so you’ll probably need to look at a number of providers.
Jerry can quickly compare rates from up to 50 top insurers so that you don’t have to spend time completing long online forms and dealing with sales calls.
Expect your rates to rise substantially after a DUI. Your insurance company will also need to file an SR-22 in Idaho on your behalf to confirm that you hold the state-mandated minimum insurance.

Other effects of a DUI

Beyond the conviction penalties and higher insurance rates, your life can be severely impacted by a DUI.
License revocation: After a DUI, you run the risk of having your license revoked—especially if you have multiple DUIs or other offenses.
Ignition interlock device: Some type of ignition interlock program is common in all states. These programs require drivers who are convicted of a DUI to install an interlock device in their vehicle, which disables the engine if alcohol is detected on their breath.
Background checks: DUIs appear on background checks, which could adversely impact future employment opportunities.

How to find cheap insurance after a DUI

If you need help finding affordable insurance after a DUI conviction, Jerry can help.
After providing you with a comprehensive cross-analysis of the best policies across providers, Jerry will handle the phone calls, paperwork, and renewals for your top pick so that you don’t have to.
To ensure you always have the lowest rate, Jerry will send you new quotes every time your policy comes up for renewal. This level of service is why Jerry earned a 4.6/5 rating on the App Store and made it the top insurance app in the country.
“I saw an ad for Jerry on Instagram and decided to give it a try. I have a terrible driving record, but Nathan still helped me. Before, almost no one wanted to insure me. Now, I have a great policy and save $200/month. I’m one happy gal!” —Terri C.
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